The outreach staff for LawHelp/NY’s Training and Information Program Statewide (TIPS!) recently attended a job fair called, the Employment Opportunities and Small Business Expo. This event was held at the Fort Washington Armory and sponsored by 27 City Council Members and the Hispanic Federation. At the event, we set up our usual table of flyers, postcards, and other information on LawHelp.org/NY (as seen in the picture below).
These job fairs not only allow the public to learn about job openings in their area, but they also provide a great opportunity to network with local businesses and learn of what skills and trades are in demand in your community. It’s no surprise that the push to get the unemployed back to work is increasingly emphasizing the need to retrain current displaced workers with new skills that match with growing and emerging job sectors.
The emphasis on retraining and acquiring new skills, is still a great challenge for many New Yorkers. Many cannot afford to go back to school, have too many family commitments, feel they are too old, etc. Thankfully, there are free and easy ways to help you acquire new skills in “in-demand” job sectors. If you are unemployed in New York, here are a few you should check out:
1. Every month check out the current job openings in your county: Each month the New York State Department of Labor puts out a list of all the job openings available per region in New York. Look up your county and see what kinds of jobs are most in-demand in your area. For example, in the Hudson Valley region – jobs in the sales, office and clerical, and management sectors usually have the most vacancies every month. Click here to search for job openings by regions.
2. Make a list of the skills that would make you competitive for the sector you are interested in: These new skills could be typing classes, courses on intermediate or advanced Microsoft Word programs, certificate on management, maybe even learning a new language, etc. Once you have identified some skills that may make you more competitive for the job vacancies in your area, look at the list of Eligible Training Provider List, (which is a list of all approved training providers statewide), and find a provider that teaches that skill. Make sure to contact your local One-Stop Center for financial assistance in paying for the course.
3. Get your local One-Stop Center to connect you with an employer in a industry you would like to work in: Did you know that a potential new employer can receive reimbursement of up to 50% of your wages while you’re in training for your new job? This is called the On-the-Job-Training Program. To find out how you can qualify, contact your Local One-Stop Career Center.
4. Get an apprenticeship: Apprenticeship is the process of learning a skilled occupation through:
- Paid on-the-job training; apprentices train under the guidance of experienced journey workers
- Related classroom training
To find out if you qualify for an apprenticeship in your area click here.
Even though being unemployed can be discouraging, just know there are free resources out there available to help you get back to work. So don’t be shy and don’t give up! Visit the New York State Department of Labor’s Career Services website to learn more.